On the banks of the mighty Congo River, opposite its more 'chaotic' neighbour Kinshasa, the city of Brazzaville has recovered from the ravages of the 1997 civil war, and is today a modern African capital with a fascinating history and many intriguing corners to explore. The French influence is obvious, especially when it comes to eating out, but at the same time this is a proudly Congolese city of over a million people with a style and a rhythm all of its own. The prevalence of the green and white taxis, and the pockets of tropical vegetation which thrive between the city’s cool white buildings, have given it the nickname “Brazza la verte” or “Brazzaville the green.”
City attractions include a visit to the sprawling, colourful Poto Poto market (especially the fabric section); the views across the Congo River to Kinshasa; enjoying cakes and pastries in one of the wonderful French-style patisseries; and a trip to pay respects to Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza, who rests under a gleaming dome made of marble from his native Italy. Key landmarks include the distinctive green-roofed St. Anne’s Basilica, the 30-storey Nabemba Tower and the Charles de Gaulle House on the banks of the river. Other fun things to look out for are the mobile ice cream sellers on their bikes (there is a joke in here somewhere about traffic cones!) and Congo’s answer to the Nespresso machine, handpushed trolleys promising “café fort” (strong coffee)! The predominant colours of
the city are green and white, with additional colour provided by the green, red and gold diagonal stripes of the national flag.
Our guests stay at the comfortable Raddison Blu and enjoy the city tours with an experienced, English-speaking guide.
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